How To Tell Your Boss You're Quitting (With Example)

By Indeed Editorial Team

Updated August 15, 2022 | Published October 18, 2021

Updated August 15, 2022

Published October 18, 2021

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

Related: How To Quit a Job: Leaving on Good Terms

We share strategies for providing verbal resignation notice to your employer, composing a resignation letter and preparing coworkers for your departure.

There are several reasons you may want to quit a job, ranging from a change in location to career advancement. Regardless, when leaving your job, it's important you do it in a way that preserves your professional relationships. Understanding how to tell your boss you're quitting can help you maintain your professional image while transitioning between jobs. In this article, we discuss how to tell your boss you're leaving, provide a resignation letter template, and give an example of a resignation letter.

Related: Should I Quit My Job?

How to tell your boss you're quitting

If you're considering leaving a job, here's how to tell your boss you're quitting:

1. Have a meeting with your boss

When you've decided to quit a job, it's important your boss knows before it becomes public. Setting time aside to meet with your boss before you quit shows you respect them. Similarly, a meeting allows you to have a cordial dialogue with your supervisor and end your relationship professionally. Ensure you set a meeting well in advance of your resignation date.

You can reach out to your boss via call or text and schedule a suitable time for a meeting. If you work at a physical office, the best approach is to meet your boss in person. Individuals who work remote jobs may have the meeting over teleconferencing software. Lastly, ensure the meeting is straight to the point yet cordial. During your meeting, you can discuss the details of your resignation.

2. Explain why you're quitting

When discussing your resignation with your boss, it's normal for them to ask you the reason for your decision. It's important you identify the reason beforehand so you can provide a confident answer. There are various reasons you may leave a job. For example, you may be leaving because you're relocating to another city or country. If you're leaving because you found a better opportunity, you can tell your manager that the new role aligns better with your career goals. Be sure to mention how your employer's training and work experience have helped you grow professionally.

If you're leaving due to a negative experience in your current role, you can start by acknowledging the positive aspects of the position. Next, discuss its shortcomings and how they affect your ability to be productive. If possible, now is a great time to renegotiate your contract. Finally, you can mention what improvements in working conditions would make you reconsider. For example, you can negotiate more flexible work options if you're leaving an employer due to a poor work-life balance.

Related: 3 Examples of Writing a Resignation Letter for Personal Reasons

3. Give reasonable notice

Giving reasonable notice is a form of professional etiquette that's essential when you tell your boss you're quitting your job. The appropriate amount of time to give an employer notice varies according to the location and nature of your work. Generally, a notice period of two weeks is sufficient time to give notice of your resignation. Giving notice ahead of time allows your employer to make the necessary arrangements to fill your position after you resign. Providing sufficient notice shows you're concerned about the company's affairs and you respect your employer and colleagues. If possible, leave enough time for you to assist with the transition.

Read More: Do You Have to Give Two Weeks' Notice as a Professional?

4. Offer to assist with the transition

To further foster a positive relationship between you and your colleagues, you can offer to help prepare for your absence. The transition process can be challenging for companies, and your manager will likely appreciate the help. Also, your experience and knowledge of the role put you in the best position to oversee a transition. There are various ways you can contribute to a smoother transition process. For example, you can recommend candidates that have the qualifications to replace you. This is particularly relevant for individuals who're quitting leadership roles.

Furthermore, you can help with the transition by organizing your pending tasks, training a new employee, or allocating your pending tasks among willing colleagues. Helping your employer with the transition demonstrates concern for the company's welfare and can strengthen your relationship with your colleagues. It also lets you transfer your knowledge about the company's work processes before leaving. Teaching another person about the role can help you develop a better understanding of it. This knowledge may assist you with future opportunities.

5. Show gratitude

As an employee, you've likely enjoyed certain benefits from your company. This can be in the form of access to development opportunities or the experiences you've gained through the role. Most likely, these qualifications and skills helped you secure your new position. It's important you express gratitude to your employer. This demonstrates professionalism and can strengthen your relationship with your manager. You can thank your supervisor in person and include an appreciation paragraph in your resignation letter.

You can also thank your colleagues before leaving. You may want to express your gratitude to colleagues in your department, team or those who are close to you. For example, you can write an appreciation letter or email to all your colleagues. This can improve your professional relationship with them, which helps build your network. Lastly, remember to exchange contact details with your colleagues.

6. Provide constructive feedback

Many organizations have exit interviews with employees who are leaving their company. These exit interviews allow outgoing employees to talk about their experience and what the company can improve. If the company you work for doesn't hold exit interviews, you may discuss it during the meeting where you notify your employer of your resignation. This is because feedback is essential for your employer to improve working conditions. Examples of areas you can discuss are the work environment, schedule, work benefits and access to training opportunities. Additionally, you can give suggestions relating to the company's corporate culture.

When giving constructive feedback, ensure you're honest and specific about it. Furthermore, try to provide recommendations on how your employer can improve. For example, if you're resigning due to problems with your current job, you may inform your employer and advise them on how to fix it, so others don't leave. Lastly, ensure you express your feedback in a respectful tone.

7. Submit your resignation letter

A resignation letter is necessary for officially quitting a job. While it is customary to meet with your boss when resigning from a company, the formal resignation is not complete until you submit an official letter. Depending on the size of your organization, you may submit the resignation letter to your supervisor or the HR department. You should be able to identify the appropriate recipient and address the letter correctly. When writing your resignation letter, ensure it's brief and straightforward. Essential details for your resignation letter are your last official day in the office, your offer to help with the transition and an expression of gratitude.

Related: How to Resign From a Job Professionally

8. Clear your workspace

After you submit your resignation letter, take the time to clean your workspace and remove any personal items from it. This prepares it for the next occupant. While clearing out your workspace, you can take the opportunity to organize the space. For example, you can arrange your files neatly in a folder and leave instructions on understanding them. Lastly, clearing your workspace can feel tedious and emotional, so it's okay to ask friends or colleagues to help you.

9. Return all company property

Many companies provide their employees with work-related items during their employment. This can range from a work laptop, cellphone or a company car. Returning these items after quitting the job may be mandatory, depending on your contract. Similarly, removing yourself from the company's security system is usually necessary. This can involve returning clearance cards and other means of access to the company's private information. Returning these details is important, so you don't expose the company to the risk of security breaches. Additionally, it demonstrates integrity and professionalism.

Template of a resignation letter

Here is a template of a letter of resignation you can use when making yours:

[Name of addressee],
[Company name],
[Company address]

Dear [name of recipient],

This letter is to notify you of my decision to resign from [company name]. My last day as an [your position] at this company is two weeks from today, [date].

I am grateful to [company name] for its contributions to my professional development. I intend to give my best to all my work tasks pending when I leave. Also, kindly let me know if there are ways I can help with the transition.

Yours sincerely,

Related: How To Write A Short Notice Resignation Letter (With Examples)

Example of a resignation letter

Here is an example of a resignation letter to use when you tell your boss your quitting:

October 4, 2021

Dear Ms. Briggs,

This letter is to formally notify you of my resignation from GRT Consultancy Services. My last day here is October 5, 2021. I am immensely grateful for the career growth and meaningful professional relationships that GRT has gifted me, and I'm sure they'll aid me in the future.

Kindly let me know if I can help with the transition. I can answer any questions my replacement may need and offer some guidance before I leave. Thank you for your time, and I wish you the best.

Yours sincerely,

James Mathews.

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